"Asil" is an Arabic word meaning "pure" or "thoroughbred, and is also spelled 'Aseel'. It is a very old game breed from the INDIA/PAKISTAN area and has been bred there as a game bird for many centuries, specifically for its aggressive behaviour. The Asil gamefowl breed might well be 3,500 years old as cockfighting has been mentioned in the Indian law, religion and philosophy manuscript "Manusriti" of that date; and in one of India's oldest manuscripts the "Dharmastrastra Manu, a classic work on law, order and ethics dating back to 1,500 B.C the first remarks about them were recorded. The breed was popular with the rulers of India (Mughal emperors & some Nawabs of states in India). They established the Asil for gaming and also developed their beauty. It is recognised as the oldest established breed of gamefowl, and this family of birds is a large one with many regional variations in size and type. Asil were developed primarily as a fighting bird, and this aspect of their development has had an overpowering influence on the breed's structure, constitution, and temperament as well as influencing its role in the development of more modern breeds. They are also known for their intelligent defensive and tactical thinking to keep power for long times in a endurance fight. The oldest evidence of organized cockfighting (based on archeological finds) has been found in the Indus valley (today Pakistan but Indian territory till 1947). The breed is difficult to keep due to these aggressive tendencies.
Some Asil colors
- Asil come in all colors, but here are the most common ones.
Bajra - Dark-Red
Sonatal - Light-Red
Kaptan - Dark-Red with a few white specks, NOT Spangled
Rampur - Black, note - not all blacks are called Rampur
Java - Grey and Duckwing
Type by Size
Reza - Smaller sized birds (under 6 lbs.)
Kulang - Larger sized birds (over 6 lbs.)
Type by region
Addition Regional Names
by Waseem Rabbani
I speak only for Pakistan. Though asil is common and reknown word here. But it also has different names in local languages. Pashtoon call it "Jangi" meaning "fighter" and farsiban call it "kulung" meaning crane for its long neck and legs. These names are used by keepers and non keepers. Keepers in the rest part of the country call it asil and generaly like to name their asil with tags that are legendary to them. like Amroha, Lasani, Meerathi Saway, Jungli and Pagiara. These are the rare breeds and everyone has them :)
Personally i recognize asil breed in Pakistan first by its origon mainly Sindhi (from Sindh), Reza (from Mianwali), Punjabi (Centeral and Southeren Punjab), Sargodhia (From Sargodha district) Peshawary (from KPK). We also can find Lari (from Iran) and Kabuli and Qandhari (both from Afghanistan) in Pakistan. All these types are distinguishable by their size, looks and fighting abilities. Further they are classified due to physicall attributes. examples wellknown Baingham (single comb) Macoy (black eyes) Kubay (hunched back) Gulway (muffed) Chandoor (crusted) Pamoz (booted). Colors are usually not taken as asil name. Or if taken, they are prefixed by the owners name like Nawab walay kalay (Blackes of Nawab), Miano walay Peelay (Goldens of Miana's) , Chadron walay lakhay (Dark red of Chadar's)
British Reza ASIL Standard
Classification: Asian Hardfeather
Egg colour: Tinted
This standard refers to the small Asil (often called ‘Reza’ Asil, which term actually applies only to birds of 3.5 – 4lbs, or ‘Rajah’ Asil – which is a term not used at all in India). The Asil is probably the oldest known breed of gamefowl, having been bred in India for its fighting qualities for over 2000 years. The name Asil is derived from Arabic and means ‘of long pedigree’. In different dialects it can be spelled ‘Asil’, ‘Aseel’ or ‘Asli’. In its native land the Asil was bred to fight, not with false spurs, but rather with its natural spurs covered with tape, the fight being a trial of strength and endurance. Such was the fitness, durability and gameness of the contestants that individual battles could last for days. This style of fighting produced a powerful and muscular bird with a strong beak, thick muscular neck and powerful legs, together with a pugnacious temperament and stubborn refusal to accept defeat. Never very numerous in Britain, the Asil has nevertheless always attracted a few dedicated admirers prepared to cope with its inborn desire to fight, a characteristic shared by the females who are poor layers but extremely good mothers.
Type and Carriage: Upright, standing firmly on strong legs. Sprightly and quick in movement. When seen in profile the eye should be directly above the middle toenail.
Body: Viewed from above, the body should appear to be heart-shaped, with broad shoulders tapering to a fairly narrow but very well developed stern, strong at the root of the tail. The body should be hard and muscular, feeling remarkably flat in the hand.
Breast: Wide and well thrown out
Back: Broad and straight.
Wings: Carried well out from the body at the shoulders. Muscular where they join the body but otherwise carrying little flesh. Wing feathers hard and tough with rather short quills.
Tail: Sickle feathers narrow and scimitar-shaped, drooping from the base. Saddle feathers pointing backwards.
Head: Skull broad with large square jaw bones, and large cheek bones covered in tough leathery skin. Beak short, thick and powerful, shutting tight.
Eyes bright and bold set in oval pointed eyelids.
Comb triple, very hard fleshed and set low. No wattles.
Neck: Medium length, carried slightly curved giving a short appearance. Thick and very hard to the touch, covered with short, hard, wiry feathers.
Throat clean-cut with bare skin extending well down the neck.
Legs and feet: Shanks thick and square with a noticeable indentation down the front where the scales meet. Thighs not too long, but round, hard and muscular and when viewed from the front should be in line with the body, not the shoulders.
Plumage: Very short and wiry, difficult to break, and with little or no underfluff. Patches of bare skin showing red are to be seen on the breastbone, wing joints and thighs.
Handling: Extremely firm and muscular. Heavier in the hand than appearance would at first suggest.
The general characteristics are similar to those of the male allowing for the natural sexual differences.
Male and female plumage: There are no fixed colours. The principal colours seen today are light red and dark red, with grouse-coloured and red-wheaten females, but grey, spangle, black., white, duckwing and pile are not uncommon. No colour or combination of colours is disqualified.
In both sexes and all colours
Beak ivory, yellow burnish acceptable.
Legs and feet - ivory, or ivory with slight yellow burnish is preferred. Yellow or slate are acceptable.
Comb, face, throat, earlobes and any exposed skin – red.
Eyes pearl, yellowish tinge or slightly bloodshot appearance acceptable.
Male 1.80 - 2.70kg (4-6lbs)
Female 1.35 – 2.25kg (3-5lbs)
Scale of points
Head (skull & beak 10, eyes 5, comb 5) 20
Thighs, shanks and feet 15
Body shape and stern 15
Lack of attitude. Any evidence of alien blood - e.g. red or dark eyes. Round shanks. Duck feet. High tail carriage. Wry tail. Roach back. Stork legged or in-kneed. Any other deformity.
Asil bantams should follow the large fowl standards in all but weight.
Male 1130g (40oz)
Female 910g (32oz)
British KULANG Standard
Origin: India & Pakistan
Classification: Asian Hardfeather. Large Fowl.
Egg colour: White or tinted
The Kulang Asil is an Indian bird of Malayoid type, kept and fought in its country of origin for hundreds of years. As Indian and Pakistani people migrated to Britain they brought these birds with them, and they have been kept here now for many years. The standard is intended to preserve the original type, which does vary from area to area. Their general appearance is very Shamo-like, the major differences being a rather less exaggeratedly upright stance and less prominent shoulders, and their development having been in India rather than the Shamo’s development in Japan.
Type and Carriage: General appearance powerful, alert and agile, balanced and full of aggressive spirit.
Body: Large, firm and well muscled.
Breast: Broad and full with deep keel.
Back: Long, broadest at shoulders, sloping down towards tail and gradually tapering from upper side of thigh. Backbone straight.
Wings: short, big, strong and bony, carried close to the body, not showing on the back.
Tail: carried horizontally or below, length to give balance to the bird.
Head: Strong, deep and broad with wattles and earlobes small or absent. Beak powerful, broad and curved downwards, but not hooked. Eyes deep-set under overhanging brows. Comb triple or walnut, set low on a broad base.
Neck: Long, strong-boned and slightly curved or sometimes with a definite angle between head and neck.
Legs and feet: Thighs long, round and muscular. Legs medium to long, thick and strong with slight bend at hock. Square shanks preferred. Toes four, long and well spread. Hind toe straight and firm on the ground.
Plumage: Feathers short, narrow, and hard, often showing red skin at throat, keel and point of wing.
Handling: Extremely firm fleshed, muscular and well-balanced. Strong contraction of wings to body.
The general characteristics are similar to those of the male, allowing for natural sexual differences.
Black/red (wheaten) is the most common colour, but no colour or combination of colours is disqualified. In both sexes and all colours.
Beak yellow or horn.
Legs and feet – pale preferred, but any colour acceptable
Comb, face, throat, earlobes and any exposed skin – brilliant red.
Eyes pearl to gold. Darker eyes acceptable in young birds.
Male 3.5kg (7lb12oz) minimum
Female 2.5kg (5lb 8oz) minimum
There is no maximum size
Scale of points
Type and carriage 40
Legs and feet 20
Lack of attitude. Overlarge comb. ‘Duck’ feet.
Source: Pakistaní site Aseel lovers
Source: Pakistaní site Aseel lovers
Physical texture should be very much excellent; balance between anterior and posterior trunk, active and clever, awe-inspiring attitude when Aseel stands on the surface of floor or soil fully fix their claw.He should be from back to keel,falt of breast, with plenty of width below ,broad across the shoulders even to that extent that when standing erect he will be a trifle wedge shaped but the width of the back must be sufficient, so that he will not present a flatiron shape.
MAIN PORTION OF ASEEL
1-HEAD(beak to neck) 2-TRUNK(Chest to hip) 3-LEGS(Leg joints to tail nails) 4-TAIL (Hip bone to tail feathers) 5-WINGS(Shoulder to primary flights)
Beak: Short,thick,hard,some curved like parrot, sharp edged and strong grip. Nose: Long and wide. Jaw: Jaw bone wide and powerful. Eye: Always remember that eye color must be pearl and other written qualities are extra points. a- Shape of eye: the eye pointed oval. b- Eyelid: Small , deep and inside. c-Iris: Very thin. d-Edge of iris:White fine circle like thread on the edge of iris, point out a excellent and pure strain. e-Outer circle of iris: Blue or blackish. f-Colors of eyes: best color of eyes in Aseel, first pearl, second blue and third yellow, and the other colors are less grade. g-Spot in the eyes: Should be large quantity of black color spots on above mentioned eye's colors. h-Eye strips: It's good imagine,strips in the eyes, same eye's colors. i-Blood-shot eye: Black shot is the best but such Aseel are rare.It is very good sign for such that Aseel has thin black or blue lines. This is the sign of superior and pure strain and that Aseel become superlative degree of Aseel strain. Comb: very much little, thick, hard , beautiful(triple/peacock/walnut) comb except "Bihangham" strain. Ear: If white small feathers (hair) on the ear's holes then this is the sign of passionate. Earlobe are red. Wattles: totally absent except "Bihangham" strain. Head: Large,wide, thick and strong bone, bone of skull a little came out from eyes because the edged bone save the eyes. Face: Long, hard, clear from wrinkles and face should be red.This is the sign of good health. The temple: Large lean covered with a little flesh,the skin must be tough. Dewlap: not prominent and little as possible. Neck: veru small,strong and flesible. Throat: not prominent. The vertebrate of the neck: should be double in size and strong. Neck should be medium length,inclined to short. The neck bone next to the skull prominent , thus giving it the shape of a Cobra's open hood. The neck bone small , the ridges fleshless, thick to feel ,about 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7 1/2 cm) below the head, strong like an iron rod, covered with wiry feathers. Hackle: should be long, if some curved upward become more beautiful and powerful.
Chest: wide , flat,powerful and bear thrown out like body builder, hard,the flesh where showing through the feathers on breast.If chest bone finished at the ass hole then that Aseel is very endure and donot drop behind in the game. Stern: The belly small,"the Pope's Nose" large,broad and strong. Back: broad, flat,viewed from above back and wings are heart/wedge/ V- shaped.
Thigh: thighs not to long ,round,hard muscular and sparesely feathered (the flesh often shining through),in line with the body and not so wide as his wings when the bird faces you , as such a bird would be unable to strike properly. Shank: length of shanks moderate: thickness of the shanks should be same as Aseel corpulency. Body feel the hardness when you press the shanks, dry, an archer and fix with body very well. Shanks not round in matured birds.The meeting of the scales makes a striaht line slightly indented. White is the only color acceptable. Distance between both legs convenient. SHANK'S GRADE: 1st Triangular shanks. 2nd Square shanks. 3rd Rounded shanks. Scale: should be wide,thick,flat and also engraved scales is the sign of strong shanks. Claw: should be wide.Fingers are also moderate strongand distance between fingers should be wide ans stright, strong toe. Toenail: yet tapering and strong nail should be very broad,strong curved and white it has sharp edge. Spurs: should be strong thick espically near from shanks, top of the spurs must be flat, it's good sign of strongness. If spurs arise close to the posterior ( forth finger of claw,it's better for that Aseel in the game.
- Which spur direction upward. OR
- Which spursdirection inward of the shanks.
These above mentioned spurs are very much better.
Hip bone : should be strong and its distance must be minimum for hens,it's distance become spread due to laying eggs. Bone and joint of tail: bone of tail strong and joint must be fix strongly with hip and joint must be thick. Tail: should be spread.The tail may be upward or downward. It's okay but for Aseel downward tail is the best .Remember, when Aseel stands then it's stance approximatelly 75 to 85 degree. Sickles:The important point the sickle feathers narrows,scimitar shaped , wiry, pointed drooping from the base,less curved than other breeds,feathers irridescent, not carried above the horizontal, close together , but not shut up. Cloak & Saddle feathers: pointing backward than in other breeds, tough pointed and beautiful.
Shoulders: thick, round and strong. Wings: should be long and strong, soft carried well apart from the body and hold high in a fit Aseel. They must be muscular , fleshness and flexible with hard strong rather strong quill . The edge of quill must be sharp because , it's good for cutting the air.
Length of quill minimum upto tail joint and it's very better if they are longer from tail joint. Primary quill: must be minimum 11 to 13 is very good. Aseel flesh: hard, muscular and strong .Cock must be in prime, hard flesh he must be free from all excessive fat and this is easily determined for whenever you can fed the gizzard good and hard there is no excessive fat surrounding it hence no excessive fat in the instetinal cavity and when there is none. Anywhere else but you must go beyond this for the thigh must be big and full and pliable,the breast must be hard and plump then your cock has got strength,then your cock can endure.A hatchet breasted cock may be able to take considerable punishment but he can't deliver enough to win. Skin: thick,hard,sticky with body. Feather: less feathers are too good but they sticky with body very well. Color: Black, Golden and Red are superlative colors. Some other colors like White,Java ( white/golden wings and tail,back and brown trunks. Crow: small and crow( roaring like lion). Best style of fowl: Aseel gaming should be forbearness,carefully, cleverness, braveness and don't confuseon feeling pain moreover endure that "punch" suddenly reply on that "punch". Never left the pit. This is th symbol of "Aseel" endurance.Always hit on the target (beak,head,eye and the temple). If Aseel hit on the eye or the temple then in the whole game strike on the same area. If Aseel effectual stroke( grievous hurt) then in the whole game strike on the same pattern/place/area. This type of Aseel famous as KARIBAZ (a hard hitter) but these type of Aseel very rear. Remember, when you lift the Aseel they crimpled up his legs to the body and close their claws and the Aseel legs also trembling Family: family should be pure strain, brave fighter, gamer and has very much endure.
- Cock-Fighting and GameFowl by Herbert Atkinson